POSTED BY ABBY CALLARD on beyondprofit
Terminal 3 at Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport, which opened last year to much fanfare, was the first airport terminal to earn a ‘Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design New Construction’ (LEED NC) gold rating. San Francisco’s new Terminal 2 quicklyfollowed.
Delhi’s terminal, which is the 8th largest in the world, has the capacity to handle up to 34 million passengers a year. The terminal was completed in time for the 2010 Commonwealth Games held in New Delhi.
Here are some of the features that earned the terminal the rating:
- Storm water drains were constructed to control erosion and sedimentation
- Parking facility has 215 electric charging stations
- Water supply for landscaping is supplied by recycled water from the sewage treatment plant
- Radar sensors that control lifts and escalators 1,200 energy-efficient LCD screens are used to display passenger information
- More than 95% of the construction waste was sold for recycling
- 100% of the departure level is lit by natural light during the day
- All housekeeping chemicals are eco-friendly and biodegradable
- 300 rainwater harvesting stations, up from 50 in 2008.
San Francisco’s Terminal 2, which used to serve as the airport’s main terminal and then international terminal, was renovated after being closed in 2000. The terminal will officially open with its first flight on April 14 and will have the capacity to handle 5.5 million passengers a year. Here are some of the terminal’s LEED-worthy features:
- Two water bottle refill stations
- A ventilation system that uses 20% less energy
- Restaurants that source local ingredients
- 90% of construction materials were recycled
- Plumbing system pumps reclaimed water into the toilets
- Preferential parking for electric and hybrid vehicles
- Biodegradable to-go containers and utensils at restaurants
- Restaurants are required to compost
What’s nice about the green features of both of these airports is that passengers are involved. In San Francisco, passengers can choose to refill their empty water bottle instead of buying a new one. In Delhi, the extra spaces for electric cars will encourage their use. So, in addition to serving as a model to other airports, the terminals are also encouraging sustainable behavior in their passengers.
LEED NC is the certification system developed by Indian Green Building Congress for green buildings.
It is the local chapter of US Green Building Council, one of the most well known, whole-building standards in the world.
The rating was awarded on the basis of T3’s features across six categories: Sustainability, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, material and resources, indoor environmental quality and innovation in design.
The IGBC definition of a green building is one which uses less water, optimises energy efficiency, conserves natural resources, generates less waste and provides healthier spaces for occupants, as compared to a conventional building.
Rainwater harvesting or uses of natural lighting and CFL bulbs are the basic elements for achieving the green building objective.
Photo credits: Indira Gandhi International Airport and San Francisco Airport